Brussels, 28 October 2022
Almost 300 leaders in industrial biotechnology from across the EU met in Vilnius, at the 15th EuropaBio’s European Forum for Industrial Biotechnology & the Bioeconomy. The Forum engaged in conversation with multiple stakeholders of the biotech community, scientists, policy makers, academia, investors and civil society.
‘’We were delighted again to bring together the biotech community and discuss how industrial biotechnology can contribute to new generation economies and a more sustainable society. There is growing understanding from the EU policymakers about the needs of the industry, but we still need to work further towards better regulation, continued investments, and simplified access to finance for our SMEs in Europe. I am pleased to see that EFIB serves as a platform to start many valuable new relationships that will lead to new products and solutions the world so desperately needs.’’, said Trish Malarkey, EuropaBio Chair, representing DSM.
Amongst the 60 speakers who joined in person and through video recordings at this year’s Forum were Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for Internal Market, Virginijus Sinkevičius, European Commissioner for Environment, Oceans and Fisheries, Professor Virginijus Šikšnys, Vilnius university, and representatives from companies such as Solvay, DSM, LanzaTech, Ev Biotech and others.
Participants could take part in 9 sessions and 2 plenaries on industrial biotech innovations and future potential in fields such as food & feed, flavours & fragrances, sustainable materials, sustainable finance and others.
The inaugural SME BioForum discussed Green Transition
Within the framework of EFIB, EuropaBio was pleased to launch it’s SME BioForum, dedicated to industrial biotechnology and the Green transition. The SME BioForum brought together over 20 SMEs to discuss key challenges for their successful growth and create recommendations for policy and regulation.
Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for Internal market, in his video statement said: ‘SMEs are at the heart of the bio-based innovation, but they are also the first to suffer from lack of funding. This is why I welcome your initiative to launch SME BioForum for industrial biotechnology and the bioeconomy under the hospices of this Conference. It will help us to ensure that they are fully embarked on this journey.’
The BioForum discussed topics such as Biomanufacturing, Digital transition and Incentives for disruptive technologies.
EFIB Vilnius statement: Europe’s potential in advanced biomanufacturing
EuropaBio’s Executive Roundtable brought together members and invited guests for a discussion on key recommendations to deliver a competitive bioeconomy, developed for the EFIB Vilnius Statement — a vision document for Industrial Biotechnology.
‘Europe needs to recognise its own biotechnology industry as a key enabler in the green transition, through facilitating innovation ecosystems, regulation for investment and a workforce for a modern economy. Developing innovative food and feed, supporting sustainable crop cultivation and providing alternatives to fossil-fuel derived products are areas where industrial biotechnology and bioeconomy innovation can deliver for Europe. This bio-driven transition is not only in response to current pressures but a generational competitive transition as technology matures into next generation biomanufacturing.’ said Dr Claire Skentelbery, Director General of EuropaBio.
The Statement includes three main policy asks: (1) Modernising regulation and policy: enabling impact; (2) Education and awareness: enabling citizens; (3) Financing innovation: enabling technologies.
The Statement was presented to the participants at the final Plenary session ‘Presentation of EFIB Vilnius Statement & Biomanufacturing future’ featuring Rob van der Meij, Capricorn Partners, Adrian Leip, DG RTD, European Commission, Nicoló Giacomuzzi-Moore, Circular Bio-based Europe Joint Undertaking (CBE JU), Juozas Olekas, European Parliament and Claire Skentelbery, EuropaBio.
Young talents and entrepreneurs drive European Innovation
Innovation boosts the competitiveness of our economies and is critical in delivering ecological transformation of our societies. EFIB delegates had a chance to learn about 13 the most innovative businesses ideas presented at the Start-up Village and to vote for the best pitch at the Start-up hour. The audience voted for AmphiStar which was awarded with a coaching consultation by Planet.Bio.
The delegates were active in setting up business meetings via the Partnering platform: 320 meetings were confirmed involving representatives from almost 200 organisations.
The Innovation Campus showcased 9 the most innovative scientific approaches in the area of industrial biotechnology and bioeconomy in a dedicated poster presentation in the exhibition.
Save the date: Rotterdam is chosen as next year‘s EFIB destination
After the successful 2022 edition, Rotterdam was selected as the next location of EFIB.
‘EFIB is EuropaBio’s flagship meeting that celebrates industrial biotechnology and it’s role in all our lives. I am delighted that our biotechnology and the bioeconomy community will gather together next year in the Netherlands, a country where biotech industry is particularly strong in industrial and environmental applications.‘ said Dr Claire Skentelbery, Director General of EuropaBio.
Next year EFIB will take place in October 2023 and will be hosted by HollandBio and Chemistry NL.
The event was co-organised with Lithuanian Biotechnology Association (LBTA), Innovation Agency Lithuania and Go Vilnius.